As of Sept. 5, the indoor aviaries of the Bird House are temporarily closed for exhibit maintenance. The outdoor plateau featuring flamingos, barred owls, bronze turkeys, whooping cranes and cassowaries will stay open during this time. Drop-in early childhood programming from 9:30 to 1:30 p.m. continues on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Visitors are invited to flock this way and soar into the fascinating world of North American shorebirds, waterfowl and songbirds. As guests make their way through the shores of the Delaware Bay, a lush prairie pothole and a tropical bird friendly coffee farm, nearly 80 species of free-ﬂighted birds stride, paddle, tweet and ﬂy all around. These immersive aviaries mimic natural ecosystems—places that boost both bird and humans’ wellbeing. New additions to the building offer even more ways to dive deeper into the story of migratory birds, while retaining the charm of the original mosaic archway entrance, on display in the Bird House lobby.
Inside each of the three walkthrough aviaries are bilingual panels in English and Spanish, highlighting the hundreds of bird species that travel across the Americas every year. And for young children, the Washington Wood Thrush serves as a friendly guide through each of the exhibit areas. In the Observatory room, visitors can learn how Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center staff conduct wild bird banding and use satellite tracking to follow the movement of birds. Daily animal keeper talks and feeding demonstrations give visitors an up-close view of the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute’s resident birds. And finally, the Roost gift shop provides visitors a chance to buy souvenirs, apparel and Bird-Friendly® certified coffee and chocolate.
The outdoor plateau surrounding the Bird House predominantly features birds of the Western hemisphere. Plus, visitors can see a living example of a bird-friendly garden, where native plants like purple coneflowers, downy serviceberry trees and highbrush blueberry bushes provide food and habitat for birds and other local wildlife.
Bird House Animal Demonstration Schedule
10:30 a.m. | Turkey Feeding and Keeper Chat (Thursdays and Saturdays)
11 a.m. | Flamingo Keeper Chat (Sundays only)
11 a.m. | Cassowary or Rhea Keeper Chat (Tuesdays only)